Lifestyles for Better Living

Cichlid Fish Part3

With so many species, you're probably wondering how you can possibly make a decision on which to adopt! (Oh, yes, I agree it's not easy!) However if you keep these four guidelines in mind when you're on your quest for cichlids, then at least you can narrow the playing field down a bit.

1. Ensure your choice won't outgrow your aquarium.

This is the Number One Mistake most first-time cichlid owners make when they adopt. Let's say you currently have an aquarium with a 20-gallon capacity. You shouldn't adopt any cichlid who is expected to grow larger than 2 to 3 inches in length. If you have a 50-gallon aquarium, then you can select from cichlid varieties that grow 6 to 8 inches.

2. Choose specimens that will all grow to be of similar size.

Let's just say small and large cichlids don't "play well together". Of course, there are several exceptions to this, but the chances of you selecting the correct ones the first time around are slim, and I really do want your adoption process to go well!

3. Choose fish from similar geographic locations.

You can probably guess the reason for this already, especially if you're already an experienced tropical fish parent. Cichlids from different geographical areas require differing environmental conditions to maintain good health. In addition to this, you may find the diverse fish have behaviors which may not be compatible with fish from other locations or even other species.

For example, it would prove disastrous to place a member of the cichlid family who originated from the African Rift Valley lakes region with those from the Amazon basin. The African variety needs hard, alkaline water to thrive. By contrast, the South American species require soft, alkaline water.

4. Don't choose fish with reputations as being overly aggressive.

You really don't want a fish who is bullying either those of their own species or other types of fish. Well, I suppose you might. But he'd probably be the only fish in your aquarium.

To learn more about this topic and more about caring cichlid fish, you can purchase one of these books.





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